How to Boost Your Business Into Orbit

tom patty and john pietroBlast off with Orange County SCORE mentors Tom Patty and John Petro this Tuesday, August 26th at 9 a.m.! Whether you have a product business or a service business, Patty and Petro will show you how to develop a “New Perspective” for your business that will help you boost your sales, revenue and profit.

Using personal examples from both small businesses like you and large companies such as Apple, Nike, Pizza Hut and Wendy’s, you will learn how to use the best possible “Marketing Thrusters” to boost your business into orbit.

Tom Patty spent over 21 years in the advertising business and retired as President of Chiat/Day, one of the most creative ad agencies in the country. His clients included Apple, Nike, Nissan, Pizza Hut and was one of five people who started and launched Wolfgang Puck Food Company.

John Pietro has over 40 years experience in marketing, advertising and promotions. He helped create the famous “Where’s the Beef” campaign for Wendy’s and also worked with Burger King, Coca-Cola, Cinnabon, Denny’s, Kinko’s and Unocal.

As SCORE mentors Tom and John have helped numerous small business owners with little or no advertising budgets and limited resources.

Register NOW!

Don’t forget to register for the Third Annual Women Business Owner Conference in Orange County, CA. do it now! Created by Orange County networking group SCORE OC and held on October 30, 2014 at the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel and Spa.

Register today! 

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Finding Your Perfect Business

465957219You want to be your own boss and you’re armed with some great business ideas. But how do you find the perfect business for your interests and skills? To find a business idea that’s a good fit for you, start with a personal inventory.

  1. Skills and experience. This should include not just your former job duties or skills (like creating spreadsheets), but skills and experiences from your personal life (like organizing a school event or being in charge of the family reunion). Write down everything you feel is one of your strengths. Are you an expert organizer or do you have great analytical skills? Are you in charge of your family’s finances and love numbers and equations? Maybe you have a knack for sales.
  2. Weaknesses. Also, write down the skills you lack, for example, you’re not detail-oriented or accounting programs make your head spin. There may be several areas you need to improve upon before you start your business (taking accounting or marketing classes, for example). Or perhaps you can compensate for your weaknesses by hiring a key employee or taking on a partner?
  3. Personality. Next, write down your personality traits. Are you creative? Are you a “people person” or do you like working on your own? Would you need to hire someone to talk to the public or are you your best person to sell your ideas? Here’s where you might want to ask someone who knows you to give you an honest assessment of your personality. Maybe you see yourself as confident and reassuring and someone else sees you as loud and overbearing. Don’t be afraid of the answers. You need to know!
  4. Work style. Decide what kind of business lifestyle you want to enjoy. Do you prefer working at all hours or would you rather be nailed down to a specific schedule? Many entrepreneurs start business specifically for the flexibility, only to find out that startups usually require you to put in a lot of hours to get the business off the ground. Does location matter—do you prefer to work at home or would you prefer to have an office? What’s most important to you?

For more help on starting the best business for you, contact your local SCORE office and talk to a mentor.

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10 Things Every Media Kit Needs

Look through a large number of media kits and you start to notice trends that distinguish the good from the bad. You probably don’t have time to read dozens of media kits so we did the grunt work for you and came up with a comprehensive list of tips for creating an effective media kit.


1. Clear Purpose

You can’t evaluate the effectiveness of your media kit unless you understand the document’s purpose. In other words, you develop the best content when you know your audience.

For media kits, the audience is likely potential sponsors, advertisers, investors, contributors, or media publishers. They are reviewing your media kit to evaluate whether an investment or collaboration opportunity exists.

With this in mind, tailor your content to convince sponsors to sponsor, advertisers to advertise, investors to invest, contributors to contribute, and press to publish.

Include information that demonstrates you two are a good fit, meaning your product and market interests are aligned.

2. Contact Information

The goal is to convince your audience to contact you. However, you would be surprised at how many media kits forget to include contact information.

Place your contact information in an easy to find location or two, and make sure it is correct and up to date.

3. Logo

Your media kit is a branded piece of marketing collateral and displaying a custom logo is merely a minimum requirement.

The entire media kit needs a look and feel consistent with your website, packaging, and other marketing material so pay attention to details like colors and fonts.

4. Tag Line or Short Description

You probably have a tag line that succinctly describes your product or company. Add it here to further brand your media kit and give readers a quick introduction to your company or product.

5. Elevator Pitch

Include a section that describes the value of your company or product. What problem do you solve? Why are you special? Why should a customer, sponsor, advertiser, or investor pick you over a competitor?

Your readers don’t have time to read paragraphs so keep it to a few short sentences. This is a tough challenge for most and will likely take the most time. You have to cut out the fluff and get right to the heart of your value proposition.

6. Audience Size

A common criteria in determining whether to sponsor, advertise, or invest is reach: how big is your customer base, whether they be readers or paying customers.

Relevant information includes number of sales, number of visitors, number of downloads, etc.

7. Social Media Presence

Reach on social media is the criteria du jour, so include at least some statistics about your social media profiles.

Relevant information includes which social media platforms you use, how many followers you have, and the engagement of your followers (number of comments, retweets, shares, etc).

8. Audience Characteristics and Behavior

This information is important in determining whether you and the sponsor, advertiser, investor, or contributor are a good fit. They will want to know market segment information such as gender, age, geographic location, income, education, and hobbies of your customer base.

Depending on the nature of your company or product, behavior may also be relevant. For example, what is the conversion rate of readers to subscribers or browsers to buyers? This type of information demonstrates the influence you have over your readers or customers.

9. Contact and Submission Guidelines

Provide clear instructions on how the sponsor, advertiser, investor, and contributor should contact you.

It may be helpful to remind them that this is a two way evaluation of fit and opportunity. You are not obligated to promote all potential sponsors, accept money from all potential advertisers and investors, or publish content from all potential contributors.

10. Link to Download Media Kit & Other Collateral

After reading through your media kit, additional resources such as a pdf of your media kit, logo image files, images of your product, or brochures may be desired for reference.

Be sure to tell them where they can find this information.